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HOME // National News // China may loan Thailand another panda once cause of Lin Hui’s death confirmed

China may loan Thailand another panda once cause of Lin Hui’s death confirmed

PHOTO: Facebook_สวนสัตว์เชียงใหม่ Chiang Mai Zoo

Does China have a spare panda?

The Chinese consulate in Chiang Mai says China might send another giant panda to Thailand, once they’ve confirmed the cause of death of a panda loaned to the kingdom in 2003. Lin Hui died at Chiang Mai Zoo on April 19, at the age of 21. Giant pandas normally live to between 15 and 20 years old in the wild, but can live to around 30 years in captivity.

On Wednesday, the seventh day after Lin Hui’s death, the zoo held a merit-making ceremony to say goodbye to the zoos most popular guest, the giant panda. Nation Thailand reports that around 20 monks presided over the ceremony, which was attended by Chinese Consul General Wu Zhiwu, the governor of Chiang Mai, Weerapong Ritrod, and Chiang Mai Zoo director, Wuthichai Muangman.

Following the ceremony, Wu confirmed that China is happy with the level of care Lin Hui received at the zoo and that an autopsy will be carried out to determine the cause of her death. He did not rule out the possibility of Thailand being given another giant panda.

“China will discuss sending a new panda to Thailand after reaching a conclusion on the death of Lin Hui.”

According to the report, Lin Hui was born in China’s Giant Panda Research and Conservation Centre, in Sichuan province, in September 2001. In October 2003, she was loaned to Chiang Mai Zoo along with her future partner Xuang Xuang, in a deal reportedly worth around US$1 million a year.

The terms of the loan included a stipulation that any cub born during the period of the loan would be handed over to China. In May 2009, Lin Bing became the first ever giant panda to be born in Thailand and one of the few born in captivity outside of China. Once she reached 2 years of age, she was handed over to China.

In September 2019, Xuang Xuang passed away at the zoo and Lin Hui became Thailand’s only giant panda.

The zoo re-opened its Panda House last Saturday, April 22, where visitors could look at life-sized cut-outs of Lin Hui, along with a photographic exhibition featuring the giant panda, and a space where fans could leave messages of condolence and flowers.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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